Special Events

Grand Opening and Ribbon Cutting

When: Tue., March 14, 4-7 p.m. 2017

When Mountain Fold Books closed down last year, it felt like a hole had been left in Downtown's south side. We've known for a while that Colorado Collective, a magazine for makers and creators in Southern Colorado, was working on the space, but now its plans have finally come to fruition, beginning with an open house and ribbon cutting tonight. This venture, COCO Crafted, will be an event venue, workshop space, dance hall (more on that later) and whatever else it needs to be.

Founder Mundi Ross says she's excited to grow the Colorado Collective brand, but mostly she looks forward to the opportunity to create community. "You can read the magazine in your own home, but we want to bring people into our space, our world," she says.

So what exactly does that entail? Well, a little bit of everything. Ross is looking at hosting 10 to 15 workshops per month in all disciplines. She mentions woodworking, herbalism, poetry, blacksmithing and more. And the people teaching these workshops are local creators, people who have a real passion for their craft.

"I feel like the traditional craft is a dying art," Ross says. She notes that a lot of schools have done away with shop class, so bringing these skills into the community is important to her, and to the larger mission of Colorado Collective.

But the workshops aren't the only focus of the business. When the space isn't in use, Ross plans to rent it out to nonprofits, businesses and individuals for whatever events they may need or want to host. They'll have a fridge, a convection oven, and other useful comforts of home to make the space accessible for all kinds of needs.

In addition to the above, Ross plans to host a smattering of other events that speak to her interest in fostering community. Monthly "retro throwdown" nights will feature a DJ-led dance party to records from the '70s through the '90s (the first of which will be March 24, $5 to get in, which ain't bad). Plus a partnership with Garden of the Gods Gourmet means occasional pop-up dinners.

She recognizes that this is a new concept for the community, and that it may take some time to rev up, but she's confident in the space they've created and the good that will come of it. "I've poured my heart and soul into this place," she says, "and I'm proud of how it worked out."

This evening's celebration of the space includes a ribbon cutting at 4:30 and a discussion of COCO Crafted's plans, followed by a party for all ages. Axe and the Oak and Copper Kettle will be on hand with beverages, while Who Gives a Scrap has offered to come down and host crafts for kids. Plus there will be giveaways, prizes including admission to upcoming workshops and credit to go toward an event rental.

Yes, COCO Crafted may be a new concept for the community, but it celebrates the makers and creators who keep this town creative, so we're excited to see what comes of it. 4-7 p.m., CoCo Crafted, 121 E. Costilla St., cococrafted.com.

Price: Free

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